Richard and Nancy Lambert with their granddaughter Ralyn
I told the man
that I thought
have sent him
to help me. He
about that, too.
ne day, my wife Nancy and I visited my doctor.
The examination turned out to be routine, but
the walk from the nearby parking garage to the
doctor’s office turned out to be anything but.
I have come a long way in recovering from a
stroke, but I still do not walk well. As Nancy and I struggled
down the steep sidewalk, I realized that I might have bitten
off more than I could chew. Nancy held my left hand, but I
soon realized that even with her help, it was unlikely I was
going to make it down that hill.
I thought about turning back but realized that it was
only 10 minutes until the appointment. Our anxiety and fear
increased as we continued down the slope. I had gotten
myself into a situation that was not going to be easily fixed,
and I began to pray!
At that moment, a man passed us with some other
folk, but I was too preoccupied with fear to pay them any
attention. As he passed, the man said something like,
“Poppa, are you all right, are you OK? Do you need help?”
I glanced up and sort of smirked to myself at his calling me
“Poppa” as I was not sure he was younger than me. Then,
another thought occurred to me: Maybe he had seen how
much I was struggling and the desperation on my face —
perhaps I was in more trouble than I realized!
It did not occur to me that this might be an answer to
my prayer. I said, “I think I’ll be all right,” but it was soon
apparent that was not true!
Afterwards it occurred to me that this man was offering
help to a stranger while others passing by offered no help at
all! Not only that, but he had other folk to care for, and yet
he still offered to help us. May God bless him!
As the man and his group moved away, we continued
down the walkway with fear and doubt. We were less than
halfway down another hill. Just a little further along than when
the man stopped and asked if he could help. I was now
convinced that I could not proceed without help. I told Nancy
that we needed to retreat up the hill before it was too late.
The man told us that he could help us go all the way down
the hill and even to the medical building. It was at this instant
that I looked sideways at him for the first time, but only
Helpfulness and kindness
on a steep path